Judy Tomczak, Communications Assistant – My husband and I moved from Brantford to Simcoe over 3 years ago. We instantly fell in love with the community and felt at home here. My plan was to work at my former  job located in Ancaster until retirement. It had been my work home for over 20 years and the plan seemed fool-proof until it was announced  that the organization would be closing its doors.

Suddenly, I felt vulnerable. Not working wasn’t an option and for the first time, I felt old. What would over 20 years experience look like  on a resume? I began the process of grieving my job and coworkers, who were a family of sorts. I sent out resume after resume and felt like a child on a playground hoping to be picked to play on a team. I waited.

With heavy hearts we went through the process of hiring an agent to  sell what was to be our forever home. One week before we were to list,  I received a call from Brittany Burley, the Executive Director of UWHN  with an offer of the position of Communications Assistant. Over 20  years of experience was an asset in her eyes.

I am most content I told Brittany, when my job helps others. I’ve been  there more times than I can count when life throws a curve. I know  what it is like to be a single parent and live paycheque to paycheque.  I know the struggle of having a child with special needs. I know what it is like to have a loved one suffer with mental illness and  addiction. I know the pain of feeling hopeless in an endless cycle but I also know the hope found in a local agency that specializes in these struggles and when life doesn’t go according to plan.

There will always be more need than help, more need than resources and more need than people to serve. We will never be able to reach everyone but we must never stop trying to do more, to reach more and to give more. We are in the business of providing hope and many of our supported agencies who are on the front lines of providing that hope have been there. There is no greater comfort than someone who has been there to be there.

I am thrilled to have found my new home here in my own community and to be a part of this great team bringing hope to those in need.

Together we can impact change, bring hope and create a healthy, stronger community. I am grateful to call United Way of Haldimand and  Norfolk my new home.

Your United Way Dollars at Work…

Our campaign goal this year is $375.000. With your help we currently support 12 local agencies and over 12,500 people who use their  services. With your generous giving we would like to be able to  support more of those agencies who are on the front lines in this community, providing hope to children, adults, and families in need.

What we raise here, stays here. Together, we can all make a difference in the lives of our neighbours.